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jmke 18th March 2004 09:07

SiS Launches First PCI Express Pentium 4 North Bridge Chipset
Silicon Integrated Systems Corp. (SiS) today announced the launch of its newest North Bridge for the Intel Pentium 4 CPU, the SiS656. The SiS656 is the first SiS P4 North Bridge to support the new PCI-E standard and will offer vendors the option of pairing it with the new SiS965 South Bridge that also supports PCI-E. With a complete lineup of next-generation ready chipsets for PC and notebooks, SiS offers vendors a complete PCI-E solution.

The new PCI Express hardware interface standard promises to revolutionize personal computing. PCI Express replaces the old PCI interface, which has been in place for the past decade, in favor of a higher bandwidth PCI Express interface which will be used by the next generation of graphic cards and WLAN cards. The main advantage of PCI Express is that it provides up to nearly 2 times the bandwidth compared with the current PCI slots, with data transmission possible at 2.5 GHz. Particularly exciting is the PCI Express graphic interface, with twice the available bandwidth of the current AGP 8x interface, promising an entirely new standard in 3D applications.

The SiS656 is ready for tomorrow's bandwidth-intensive applications today: Advanced HyperStreaming technology, delivering even higher overall performance in comparison with HyperStreaming technology, offers more advanced data processing that maintains the best resource utilization across multiple operating environments. Moreover, SiS MuTIOL 1G technology, embedded in SiS656 chipset, ensures the smoothest data transfer between South and North Bridges and the fastest bus architecture available on a desktop PC chipset.

Memory-intensive digital multimedia applications will also benefit from the support for dual channel DDR2-667 and DDR400 offered with the SiS656 chipset. 4 DIMMS are supported, with a huge 1 GB per DIMM of RAM, for a total of 4GB of system memory supported. The SiS656 employs an extremely flexible dual-channel memory architecture that supports all types and capacities of memory modules while retaining full dual-channel functions at a memory bandwidth up to 10.6GB/s with DDR2-667 modules and 6.4 GB/s with DDR400 modules. The SiS656 also supports the new PCI Express x16 interface, which provides an 8GB/s bi-direction transfer rate, compared with the current AGP 8x standard of 2.1GB/s.

Combined with SiS's latest South Bridge Chipset SiS965, the SiS656 offers buyers a formidable combination that is ready for the next generation of peripheral devices thanks to PCI-E support. The SiS965 supports PCI-E x1, gigabit LAN, 8 USB 2.0 ports, AC 97 7.1 channel sound, 4 SATA and 4 PATA. The SiS965 also supports Multiple RAID disk array modes in RAID0, 1, 0+1 and JBOD.

Vendor samples are available now, with motherboards based on the SiS656 due to hit the market in May.

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